Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell isn't budging.
Senate Republicans sought to escalate pressure on Democrats on Tuesday as they seek the two more votes across the aisle needed to move human-trafficking legislation that has been ensnared in the volatile politics of abortion policy. The delay has meant no confirmation vote for Loretta Lynch, President Obama's pick to be the next attorney general.
At a press conference in the Capitol, McConnell said he's planning to schedule more roll calls on the bill that fell short in a procedural vote earlier in the day. "We are going to stay on this bill. It is important to victims of trafficking," he said.
McConnell's comments came a few hours after the bill stalled on the Senate floor in a 55-43 vote when 60 votes were needed to advance the measure toward final passage.
Four Democrats—Robert Casey, Heidi Heitkamp, Joe Donnelly and Joe Manchin—voted with Republicans (McConnell voted against it, which under Senate procedures preserves the ability to try and advance the measure again). Two Republicans—Ted Cruz and Lindsey Graham—were not present at the vote. With all GOP members present, Republicans would need just two more Democratic votes to reach the 60 needed to beat a filibuster.